Last week I briefly touched upon how shooting projects where you have
gone right to the edge, in terms of what’s at stake, can skew what seems

Perhaps that post, brief as it was, was the best I could put it (because
it was brief). But I’ll try to (briefly) expand on those thoughts here.

Here goes . . .

After you’ve shot, been immersed in, a project that is dangerous to
your well-being, that has pushed you to the edge of sanity, where
the effects of the shooting drive, like a nail, into your brain, where
do you go from there?

My motel room, Ohio, 2004 (from American States)

In a way a project that has that effect on you is like falling in love.
You are so affected, the feelings are so powerful. You are kind of
scared but have never felt so alive. The passion and importance
cannot be denied.

Bush, 2010 (from USER)

But that first blush never lasts. Over time things settle, the passion
dissipates and the dull routine of existence once again asserts its
primacy. You can then go looking for a new love, try to feel those
feelings again (a chumps game if you ask me), or you can accept
the fact that there are always peaks and valleys in life, that you are
on an arc whose architecture must obey the demands of emotional
physics. Nature abhors a vacuum, it always seeks equilibrium. But
nature also needs chaos to create.

Site of the operation, April 6, 2011 (from LIVE THROUGH THIS)

And one thing always leads to another. If you keep working you’ll
end up with a compendium of projects. Some will matter more than
others, but each will be colored by what has come before and, in turn,
color what comes after. Unless, that is, you just keep doing the same
thing over and over and over and over. Stasis equals death, just like
thought minus action equals zero.

Juno, army mascot, 2014 (from Official Ottawa)

. . .Think now
History has many cunning passages, contrived corridors
And issues, deceives with whispering ambitions,
Guides us by vanities. Think now
She gives when our attention is distracted
And what she gives, gives with such supple confusions
That the giving famishes the craving. Gives too late
What’s not believed in, or is still believed,
In memory only, reconsidered passion. Gives too soon
Into weak hands, what’s thought can be dispensed with
Till the refusal propagates a fear. Think
Neither fear nor courage saves us. Unnatural vices
Are fathered by our heroism. Virtues
Are forced upon us by our impudent crimes.
These tears are shaken from the wrath-bearing tree.

from Gerontion – T.S. Eliot


STRAYLIGHT has 2 new publications on offer . . . .

TENSION by Boreal Collective is a newsprint thing, that makes sense
when you pull it apart. It’s $4.50 (what a deal).


Page spreads

Pulled apart and pasted to a wall

I don’t speak Spanish is a booklet by yours truly . . .being a stranger
in a strange land, not really knowing, not seeing the whole picture,
walking on my way to nowhere. It’s $12.50 and comes with a swell
5×5 inch print (an out take, suitable for framing). (What a deal.)

Cover and included print


Page spreads

Go here to buy: XXXX (Tenson is in the OTHER/STUFF section, I don’t
speak Spanish

Author: Tony Fouhse

Tony is an Ottawa-based photographer.